The Next Big Red One


Brendan McGowan has done everything at Temple except carry the ball; check that, he’s done that, too (above against Navy).

If at first you do not succeed, try, try again.

So it is with Temple’s most famous redhead this season, Brendan McGowan, taking the mantle from last year’s decorated redhead, Tyler Matakevich.

Call him The Big Red One, which is the nickname of the United States’ Army’s First Division. Clearing the way for all of the weapons on the Temple offense will be McGowan’s job, who is the first member of the offense to touch the ball at the center position.


Phil Walker (left) and Haason Reddick.

The try, try, again reference is because Kyle Friend was on the Rimington Watch List but fell short of receiving the award that goes to the best center in the nation. Maybe McGowan will have better luck this season. McGowan is a somewhat surprising candidate, but not to Temple fans, who saw the Owls not drop off much, if at all, in the four games he started last year for the injured Friend. Surprising because the coaches on the Rimington committee figured that out, too as the current grad student at Temple, has been named to the Rimington Trophy Committee’s 2016 Spring Watch List, which includes the 50 best centers in the FBS.

McGowan is one of those guys who is a returning starter at not one but two positions and is a reason Owl fans can put the center position on auto pilot and be confident they are in good shape there. In addition to the four games he started at center for the injured Friend last season, he has started an additional 11 games as at right guard.

He’s bigger than Friend (6-3, 298 vs. 6-1, 280), who is now with the New York Jets.

In other news over the weekend, two more Owls received single digits and those are quarterback Phillip Walker (going from 11 to 8) and defensive end Haason Reddick, who is going from No. 58 to No. 7. Walker’s toughness is well-documented, playing most of last season with a separated shoulder after getting a cheap shot in the end zone in the opening game against Penn State. Reddick, a former outside linebacker, might be the fastest defensive end ever to play for Temple and proved his toughness in the weight room in the offseason, consistently posting best numbers in the tough guy competition.

Wednesday: Why Sam Shaffer Should Worry


11 thoughts on “The Next Big Red One

  1. Hey mike,

    Completely unrelated here, but you reminded me of this is mentioning that Kyle is with the NY Jets this pre-season.

    So is Bernard Peirce, but he has yet to take the field that I know of. I read the Post just about every day and see him listed as out with a hamstring injury.

    My guess is that he’ll be cut soon and his career will be basically over with. Except for a promising rookie campaign in Baltimore, he’s been what anyone can describe as a bust in the pros. We all had high expectations for him.

    Do you have any ( or anyone else who’s reading) have any reflections on his NFL career? What the heck happened to him? I thought after his rookie season that he was set uo perfectly with the Ravens for a breakout. The nagging injuries might be a small explanation, but certainly not all the answers. What of his legal problems as well?

    Did we expect too much?

    • BP was a great college football player who was betrayed by his brittle body in the pros.., he took the money to leave school early.., personal circumstance was the driving factor

      IMHO he probably should have hired a full-time personal trainer on Day 1 of his professional career

    • Man, Temple North with Friend, Bernard, and Robby joining Todd. I think the end is near for Bernard. Someone said the “average” NFL back’s career is 4.7 years and he’s about there. I will always remember the good times with Bernard, like the Navy game as a true freshman (268, 2 tds) but, damn, if he had not gotten hurt in 2010 we would have beaten PSU. (We were leading, 15-13, at halftime and he was kicking butt.) Also, the Ohio game, he was flying down the sideline on his way to a sure touchdown and the hammy tightened up. Daz wasn’t too happy when he declared.

  2. Pierce was fragile here. In two big games (UCLA and Ohio) he went out early thereby sinking the Owls hopes. Nevertheless, when he was healthy, there were few better. His speed to the outside was amazing.

  3. first team offense got thrown off the practice field today.., time for McGowan, Phillip and JT to step up in the leadership dept.., Kyle Friend kept everyone focused

    • Hard to believe all of those guys who performed so well under battle during “real games” got thrown off the field at practice. Maybe it’s just the heat and camp fatigue. At one point, you want to hit someone else in another uniform and not just your teammates all the time. Maybe we’ve reached that point.

  4. i’m nervous about r offensive line. Rhule said the line isn’t stepping up during camp. after McGowan & Dawkins, it doesn’t look good.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s